International Cherry Blossom Festival in Japan is one among many special features that lure globetrotters every year. Over some decades now, travelers across the globe flock to Japan and the US in pursuit of the serene and incomparable beauty of blooming cherry flowers.
Picture this: You’re exploring a hilly hinterland and it suddenly bursts on to you with thousands on full-bloomed cherry flowers. You’re in a place which is no less than a land of a fairy tale. Who wouldn’t want to visit such dramatic land? But to get the same feeling, you don’t need to swim through oceans to Japan or the USA. Shillong is hosting the most awaited 2nd International Cherry Blossom Festival 2020, on November 8th to 11th. This festival at Shillong, however, embraces Meghalaya tourism in a different way. This time it’s going to take a notch up Meghalaya to global tourist list.
What’s in the festive plan?
Meghalaya government has a lot in its bucket to offer. This festival is being organized by the Meghalaya Government in association with the Institute of Bio-resources and Sustainable Development (IBSD) and the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR).
Himalayan cherry blooms and grows wild across Khasi Hills and exploring them is a heavenly journey. This 4 days long festival is going to be celebrated across four venues such as JN Stadium, Polo Second Ground, Ward’s lake and Tara Ghar. Thousand of trees have been planted which are now prepping the state with captivating pink and white flowers.
There’s going to be a lot of fun and frolic events to make the festival even more special and happening. The festival will start off with a cultural opening ceremony along with drawing and painting competitions, storytelling events, fashion shows and other events such as Cherry blossom run, archery competition, Miss cherry Blossom 2017, a football match with as usual a cultural closing ceremony on 11th of November. The festival will also feature a guided night walk beneath the illuminated cherry trees, winery shops, live music, arts, crafts and special northeastern cuisines which will be there as a staple of your mood enhancer.
Where else you can go to Shillong?
Shillong boasts of a number of beautiful waterfalls that can keep you glued for more than four days. So when you’re wondering what else to visit in Shillong other than Cherry Blossom Festival, we have picked out some of the greatest tourist spots, you should visit once in your life. Here they are-
The three-tier wide waterfalls seem to pop out nowhere with mighty water gushing through the shoreline. The name was given by British rulers and was inspired by a large elephant-shaped stone beside the fall.
Lady Hydari Park:
Named after the erstwhile first lady, Hydari of the region, this park is packed with a diverse range of flowers has a good collection of animals that some people love to call it as a zoo than a park. You will be amazed to see the variation of flora and fauna. This place will make you happy but if you’re going with kids, they will be happier.
The story behind this fall is not as sweet as it’s termed. A record number of suicides and accidental deaths have happened here. It’s said that group with odd numbers, returns with even numbers of people. Isn’t it a little spooky? Be very alert about every step you take because the path is very difficult and has slippery stones around.
We’re finishing off the tourist list with this amazing and historically important place. Brookside Bungalow was one of the favorite summer residencies of Bengali Nobel laureate Rabindra Nath Tagore. Shesher Kavita, his one of the famous iconic creation has a prominent presence of Shillong. If you want to relate more with his creation and feel that essence then this place well worth an hour of your time.
How can I make a good journey from Kolkata to Shillong?
It’s almost the end of October and now it’s difficult to book a train ticket from Kolkata to Shillong. So, in this situation, you can count on a car rental service in Kolkata that offers outstation holidays.